The Incredible Ship of Captain Skip (9788418133169) / El increíble barco del Capitán Marco (9788418133152) by Alicia Alcosta, illustrated by Cecilia Moreno. NubeOcho, 2021.
Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4
Genre: Picture book
What did you like about the book? English and Spanish editions of a delightful adventure on the high seas. In the English edition, the main character is Captain Skip, a girl; in the Spanish edition, it’s a boy named named Marco. Otherwise, the versions are similar. I like that the character depiction lends itself to any gender. The Captain decides to go on an adventure. She finds a ship, hires a crew and travels the world’s oceans. The travelers traverse real oceans, and meet obstacles which snap off the stern, prow and mast. There are directions to fold a paper ship, and when these accidents happen in the story, readers tear off the corresponding part of their paper ship. The ship sinks, but the crew all survive. At the end, years later, a treasure is found in the shipwreck, which corresponds to a surprise when the remaining part of the paper ship is unfolded. It’s a clever idea, and I am using it for story time!
Appealing digital art in deep, sunny colors depicts a crew with diverse abilities (one has a peg leg), skin tones (including blue) and genders. The book’s mood is calm and happy, despite the catastrophic fate of the ship, but there’s a spectacular octopus on one two page spread whose mood is open to interpretation!
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? For fans of high seas adventures, ages 3-6.
Who should buy this book? Day care centers, elementary school and public libraries, and Spanish language collections.
Where would you shelve it ? Picture books
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Near the top.
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA
Date of review: June 26, 2021